Real Madrid defender Raphael Varane says ‘No’ to Jose Mourinho and Manchester United

French defender Raphael Varane has rejected the chance to join former manager Jose Mourinho at Old Trafford, and is set to remain with Champions League winners Real Madrid.

The two-time Champions League winning manager has already bolstered his defence by signing Eric Bailly from Villarreal. However he is keen to add another defender to address Manchester United’s problems at the back. 23-year old center-back Raphael Varanae has been a transfer target for Mourinho since his days as Chelsea manager.

According to Madrid-based publication MARCA, Mourinho recently approached Varane to join him at Manchester United, but the Frenchman turned down his former mentor and chose to stay at the Santiago Bernabeu.

The report states that he was convinced to stay by France national icon, club legend and current Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane. Varane is now keen to put his injury issues behind him and fight for a place in the first team. He is aiming to play alongside captain Sergio Ramos in the heart of the Real defence this coming season.

Jose Mourinho was the manager who brought Varane to Real Madrid in 2011, paying Ligue 1 club Lens €10 million for his services. The pair worked together for two seasons before the Portuguese left for Chelsea and are believed to share a very good relationship. However, he was scouted by Zidane and it looks like the Frenchman has assured Varane of a future at the Bernabeu under his leadership.

Can Varane put his injury problems behind him and shine for Real?

Picture Credits: AFP/Getty Images
Picture Credits: AFP/Getty Images

Raphael Varane’s development has been stunted since he underwent knee surgery in 2013 after injuring it during a game against Real Sociedad. He managed to bounce back the next season, one of the highlights being him playing the full 120 minutes of Real’s Champions League final victory over Atletico Madrid in 2014. However injury problems struck again last season.

He missed a significant portion of the tail end of last season due to a calf injury, and was then ruled out of Euro 2016 with a thigh injury.

Varane is a fast and strong center-back with a good footballing mind, as evidenced by his positioning and decision making. He is currently the third-choice behind the central defensive pairing of Pepe and Ramos, but if he can put his injury issues to bed, then he may have a key role to play for Real Madrid in the future. Probably the most important factor is that he has the faith of the Real Madrid hierarchy to help him accelerate his career at the Bernabeu.

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